News you may have missed #0134

  • S. Korean government tries to silence anti-surveillance activist. Park Won-sun, the executive director of the Hope Institute, a civic think tank, says he will continue to criticize the country’s National Intelligence Service (NIS) for spying on civilians, despite charges filed against him by the government.
  • Cleric in CIA kidnap trial seeks millions. Hassan Moustafa Osama Nasr, an Egyptian cleric kidnapped by the CIA from a Milan street in 2003, has asked for €10 million ($15 million) in damages from the American and Italian defendants charged in his abduction.
  • Three US-based Chinese nationals accused of selling arms to China. Chinese nationals Zhen Zhou Wu, Yufeng Wei, Bo Li and Chitron Electronics and Shenzhen Chitron Electronics Co. Ltd., face a 38-count indictment for conspiring to violate the US Arms Export Control Act for allegedly exporting defense weapons and electronics, money laundering and filing false documents with the US Department of Commerce.

Bookmark and Share

Advertisements

News you may have missed #0127

  • Is China using Nepal as a base to spy on India? India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) has accused Beijing of using the so-called Nepal-China study centers in Nepal to spy on India. The centers, which are located all along the Indo-Nepal border, are being used to clandestinely gather information on Indian activities, says RAW. It also rumored that RAW is monitoring around 30 Chinese firms which have set up base in Nepal and may be involved in spying on India.
  • Italian lawyers seek jail for CIA agents. Public prosecutors in Italy have urged a court in Milan to jail 26 Americans for the kidnapping of a terrorism suspect in a 2003 CIA operation on Italian soil. They also want a 13 year prison sentence for the former head of Italy’s secret service, Nicolo Pollari. Last week the US government moved for the first time to officially prevent Italian authorities from prosecuting American citizens involved in the CIA operation.
  • CIA director meets Pakistani spy chief. The director of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Ahmed Shuja Pasha, has met with CIA director Leon Panetta in Washington. Last week, Lieutenant General Pasha yelled at a US journalist for daring to utter the CIA’s allegations that the ISI is withholding crucial intelligence information on al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

Bookmark and Share

US moves to shield operatives in CIA abduction case

Hassan Nasr

Hassan Nasr

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
The US government has moved to officially prevent Italian authorities from prosecuting an American Colonel who in 2003 was involved in the illegal kidnapping of a Muslim cleric in Milan. If the Reuters report is accurate, it will be the first time that Washington moves officially to shield its covert operatives from prosecution in the Italian court system. Colonel Joseph Romano is one of 26 Americans, many of them CIA agents, believed to have been involved in the daylight abduction of Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr from a Milan street. Nasr, who is also known as Abu Omar, says he was brutally tortured and held illegally for years without charge in Egypt, where he was renditioned by his American abductors. Read more of this post

News you may have missed #0022

  • Australian detained on espionage charge in China. The arrest of Stern Hu, who heads Anglo-Australian Rio Tinto’s iron ore operations in China, comes right after the company backed out of a deal to sell China’s state-owned Chinalco a big stake in Rio Tinto.
  • US diplomat implicated in CIA abduction in Italy requests immunity. Days after the wife of a of Muslim cleric Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, who in 2003 was kidnapped by the CIA in Milan, Italy, announced plans to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights, a CIA agent involved in the affair has come forward requesting immunity. Sabrina Desousa, who was listed as a “diplomat” at the US consulate in Milan at the time of Nasr’s kidnapping, has made the request through her lawyer. Last week, Robert Seldon Lady, who was the CIA station chief in Milan at the time, came forward making a similar case.
  • CIA won’t release torture interrogation contracts. The CIA has denied a Freedom of Information Act request for post-9/11 contracts signed between the CIA and Mitchell Jessen & Associates. As intelNews explained last May, Jim Mitchell and Bruce Jessen were the psychologists hired by the CIA to design an elaborate ten-stage interrogation program of “war on terrorism” detainees, which apparently culminated in waterboarding.

Bookmark and Share

News you may have missed #0016

  • Wife of cleric kidnapped by CIA seeks European Court trial. Nabila Ghali, the second wife of Hassan Mustafa Omar Nasr, who was kidnapped by the CIA from a street in Milan, Italy, in 2003, announced plans to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights against the Italian government’s state secrecy clauses that are hampering the Italian trial on Nasr’s abduction. 
  • NSA to build huge facility in Utah. The National Security Agency, which is tasked with worldwide communications surveillance, as well as communications security, is in the process of renovating its soon-to-be-unveiled 470,000-square-foot Texas Cryptology Center, which will cost upwards of $130 million and be used primarily to store intercepted communications data. This is now to be coupled with another, 1-million-square-foot data center, to be built at Utah’s Camp Williams. 
  • US government to keep CIA black sites open, for now. A government prosecutor has disclosed during the ongoing trial of former Guantanamo detainee Ahmed Galani that the CIA does not plan to close down its black sites “for now”.

Former CIA station chief regrets “trail of evidence” in Italy abduction

Hassan Nasr

Hassan Nasr

By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS | intelNews.org |
For over two years, Italian justice has been after 26 Americans and five Italians who kidnapped a Muslim cleric suspected of terrorist ties and secretly flew him to Egypt, where he was secretly renditioned. The cleric, Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, who was kidnapped while walking down a street in Milan, says that his Egyptian jailers held him for years without formal charges and tortured him severely. The Italians’ search for the 26 Americans, all of them almost certainly CIA personnel, has been met with a “no-comment” policy from Washington and the CIA. But now one of the 26, Robert Seldon Lady, has given a rare interview to Italy’s Il Giornale newspaper, in which he essentially admits that the CIA was behind the operation.   Read more of this post